Best Makeup Colours Light Summer Thumbnail

| Best Makeup Colours Light Summer

Best Makeup Colours Light Summer

access_time 2014/11/8 account_circle chat_bubble_outline 31 Comments

We’ve just come back from a stellar analyst meeting. The part of the program that most everyone requested again next year was asking a woman to role play. We invited Sandra to join us for an afternoon. She had been analyzed as a *Light Summer. She understands the palette but cannot get the look to work.

The Sandras are among my favourite clients. They are done trying things over and over, spending random money in random ways. They reach a place of accepting that they will not figure out their best appearance on their own, and admitting that nothing they tried themselves convinced them. Now, we are ready to get somewhere.

Nobody is a carbon copy of anyone else inside a Season. It may take a few weeks or second visit to put every piece in place.  A returning client who can only say, “I don’t look right. I can’t get it to work.” will not become a constructive conversation. Together, the analysts did a thorough repeat PCA. We arrived at Light Summer once again.

We asked Sandra to bring fashion images of the look she would like to achieve. I expected Versace from our conversation and got Burberry and Hugo Boss. Bring pictures of what you envision. Very often, the client is crossing over between colours and styles, when they should be kept separate. Every Season appears in every body type and clothing style, but some go together with less searching. Burberry and Light Summer is not automatic; conscious colour choices are learned once you have awareness of the categories.

How can you tell when you shop? Work with your entire fan, not just the colour you are matching. This is because every colour in your will be seen next to the garment, not just your blues with a blue blouse, or your greens with a green one.

Suppose you are one of the cool-neutral Seasons who does not want to go too warm, such as Light Summer. Lay the open Light Summer fan on your garment. Look at the cooler lipstick colours and cooler neutral colours in the palette. If the garment is too warm, those colours will clash.

To know colours that are too warm, a Light Summer will lay her open colour fan on the garment. If the cooler reds and blue greys make attractive combinations and feel good together, she will probably be fine. If the cool reds look cold or severe, or remind you of bruises, or the blued grays look harsh, dark, and not an ounce of fun,  while the garment seems weak or too yellow, that is exactly how it will feel subconsciously to others seeing you wearing it.

White flowers

Solving your Season

To keep in mind as you learn about your colouring:
  1. Don’t spin your wheels in the Season. The analyst can help you see yourself in the colours of any palette. Everyone can find colour combinations that are interesting and look expensive, a term that I use because the opposite is the only other choice. Whatever the Season, certain colours will only ever look tacky, even in cashmere or silk, while others will look rich, including yellow and lime.
  2. Don’t spin your wheels in the stereotype. Many ideas about the Seasons were cultivated when there were only 4 choices. Testing systems today are more refined and objective, with 12 defined groups, each with its own colour language. Idea shortcuts took hold, then as they do now, but they led to less clarity, not more.
  3. Don’t spin your wheels in the words. Dark Seasons are not necessarily dark to look at. Dark Autumn is not especially dark at all, at least in Caucasians. Everything about colour is relative. Light Seasons may look light or medium and they have their own versions of darker colours. If you placed their hair or dark colours on a Dark Season person, the lightness would suddenly be obvious.
  4. Be careful of well-meaning friends. They can see that the outcome is not perfect. They know you feel frustrated and want to offer helpful suggestions.  And they lack enough knowledge, application, and flexibility of the colour system to come up with the answer. The usual advice is that the Season is incorrect. That can be the case, but most often not. The adjustment is either in the harmonizing of the palette or the correction of some other thing, maybe hair colour, maybe makeup. The Bright Winter who has not fully understood the makeup possibilities will try to back away from the figure skater image in her head and email that she might be a Bright or True Spring after all, as her friend believes.
  5. Every bad thing is a good thing in disguise. Sandra now knows the why of her Light Spring colouring. Don’t think in terms of Season labels. They are a starting point to identify the mountains of stuff that you can forget about once and for all. Shopping finally opens up after that. Many of my own clothes could swatch into True Winter if I want something to wear, but I can tell you which 10 Seasons they never swatch into. Sandra said to me after, “I am ready now.” Best thing I can hear.
White flower

Light Summer Makeup

The trick with Light Summer is keeping things fresh and clean in a delicate way.

Using their own colours, anyone could do a smoky eye shadow design. What I find more beautiful and far more interesting is to use coloured accents at the outer part of the upper lid. I do not say this lightly. Makeup that reads as obviously blue, green, or purple can sabotage a woman’s ability to be taken seriously. If you want to wear these colours, be sure to know your Season version of them.



Pinterest pin it button


Being a Light Season means lighter makeup than other Seasons. Light is not near-white in this context. Too pale is draining and chalky. Lips that are about the colour of skin may be appropriate or attractive on young girls. Aim for the middle of the swatch book to the dark end depending on the woman and the occasion. Mature women have more presence and more power in the face. Their makeup needs the same if it is to do what it could.

How to swatch makeup to Season was described in the Light Spring article.


31 Thoughts on Best Makeup Colours Light Summer

  • "; ?> Murray

    Thank you for this Christine – super to have some up to date LSu recommendations. I especially liked the points you made about skin turning yellow. Could you please talk a little about what may be going on for a struggling-with-palette person when it is the coolest, dustier, (palette match) shades that turn the face yellow? Would that then indicate that person is likely warmer than the colour? Or suggest something else is required – clarity/depth…?

  • "; ?> Johanna Jarvinen

    Excellent post, thank you Christine! We have a fair number of Light Summers here in Finland, and yet cosmetic colours for LSu aren’t easy to find (lipstick especially). I’ve been doing quite a bit of swatching, but not much luck. So I’ve added many of these recs to my list for LSu, I hope that’s OK. Next stop Inglot, as I’m excited to see what these colours look like!

  • "; ?> LauraH

    At first I thought this post wouldn’t apply to me, then I got to the ‘to keep in mind’ section. This could be a post on it’s own…great stuff here. I’m curious to know more about how you see the expensive looking combinations (for BrSpr of course!) And I like the comments about being okay with not feeling comfortable with the personality descriptions – you know I’ve had some difficulties there. BTW I’ve been getting some compliments on my appearance lately so something is working! Thanks again.

  • "; ?> LauraH

    I should add – it’s not just what other people have said – I’m feeling more comfortable with how I look and how the colours are working together. It’s starting to click and getting dressed is starting to make sense and be easier.

  • "; ?> Corinne

    I find the section on the false yellow overtones fascinating. Of course! It seems so obvious once you point it out. Does this only happen with yellow/too warm colors? What about if something is too cool? Back when I was trying to self-analyze, I found a lot of colors made me look gray. For a while I thought it meant I was gray-er than the color, and decided I was a SSum. I finally had a successful PCA and learned I am DA. So is it the case that too cool can look gray (or maybe it’s blue really)? I find these descriptions about ways of looking for clues in our appearance really helpful as even using a swatch book I still try a lot of wrong colors.

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Murray – the yellow answer is answered one woman at a time because the reasons will differ in each case. Might be real yellow, false yellow, or just the wrong yellow and her skin is glowing it back out again. Many possibilities.

      Corinne – lots of different casts and overtones are possible. For sure, DA skin is gray cement in Su pastels. And yes, among the various effects of too cool colour, greying of the complexion is one. The swatch books are a starting place for us all, me included. I lay that book on 20 fabrics that looked possible but are not right.

  • "; ?> Daga

    I found this post very helpful, too. Some time before I noticed a paradox that spring people don’t look yellow to my eyes – if they wear right colours . I’m a BSp – from my experience too warm colours are making me red (it makes me wanna correct the redness with too yellow foundation though…) and too cool colours are making me sallow – they bring out yellow tones, often along with grey and olive which kind of leads to wrong (too yellow/olive) foundation as well. I feel autumn colours are making me truly grey.

    I find working with my palette/knowing my colours not so easy as I thought – I tend to drift towards BW… In autumn/winter collections it seem to be the only bright option and in artificial light the colours look a lot warmer. I bought couple of BW sweaters because of that and tried on a lot of BW lipsticks.

  • "; ?> LauraH

    As a BrSp I also drift toward BW, it’s easy to do. I think part of the reason is that there are more BW clothes available. Getting it right is definitely a process and not every choice turns out to be spot on….but a million times better than before my PCA.

  • "; ?> Daga

    Your so right LauraH, many of my choices turned out not perfect, plus a struggle I had with lipsticks and getting the hair right – but it’s 100x better than before. I can say that today I truly knew a value of my transformation. It’s getting cold and it’s hard to find right clothes at stores now. I was desperate so I wore last seasons sweater (before PCA ). After warm months of mostly good clothes… when I looked in the mirror I literally felt sick! Maybe because I actually looked very sick in that beige. How could I ever, ever… wear a colour making me look sooo baaad. “Make yourself look fat cause it looks great on skinny models” cut was a cherry on this bad cake…

  • "; ?> LauraH

    Daga – Agree it’s hard to wear ‘old’ colours, they make me feel ‘not right’. So that must be progress! If you’re looking for good colours in sweaters, check out Eric Bompard. Brora can be good too, not so great right now but better in the spring. They will both send emails about their sales if you sign up. Hope this is useful.

  • "; ?> Kate

    These make-up articles are so interesting and helpful. Thanks for sharing! Ps I really liked the Pink Voltage lipstick and Truffle eyeliner you suggested for Lsp – thanks for the recs 🙂

  • "; ?> Daga

    Thank you Laura, The brands aren’t available where I live and buying clothes online is tricky for someone who pays so much attention to the colour, but other BSp may find it useful. The bright side of our Season is that the colours are too bright for most people therefore most likely to be on sales, pre-owned fashion etc.

  • "; ?> Patricia

    Thanks for the Light Summer suggestions. I thought I would share my recent favorites. Lately I have been enjoying the Make Up For Ever Artist shadows which come in a huge variety of colors. I514 Pink Ivory (Iridescent) for the lid with S642 Sahara (Satin) in the crease is easy and perfect for every day. One eyeshadow that always looks great is Trish McEvoy’s 24-Hour Eye Shadow and Liner in Smokey Quartz. (There is a picture of “light summer” Doutzen Kroes on your Natural Coloring Pinterest Board, and the Smokey Quartz eyeshadow along with Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter in Cupcake appear to be very close to the colors she is wearing.) For brows, Anastasia’s Brow Wiz in taupe. Blush is always a challenge for me but I have been considering Make Up For Ever HD Blush #210 Cool Pink for my next purchase. Another lipstick suggestion is Giorgio Armani Rouge D’Armani in Pink 503.

  • "; ?> Stephanie

    Great article! I thought of a few questions while reading – If light summer skin can look very yellow due to false yellow overtones, how do you match foundation correctly? From personal experience, I have never found a cool toned foundation that looks right on me. Even neutrals usually look off. The line I’ve found matches best is Bobbi Brown which are all pretty yellow looking. But then sometimes I think I look too yellow. You mentioned Bobbi Brown BB Cream in Light in the article – are you saying that works for Light Summers or were you talking about Autumn? I do own that color and I think it’s a tad yellow. Also, under the lipsticks it says Benefit Rouge Shine 23 – I am only able to find a Sephora brand Rouge Shine 23? Also, do you have the shade name for Bobbi Brown Gloss #11? Thanks so much for this article!

  • "; ?> Agata

    After reading this article, I have no idea what season am I. I thought I was a light summer, because black is absolutely worst colour for me (I remember getting black hair, it was disaster), however I do not look good in beiges and taupes (what my friends emphasise a lot), any too muted colours. Red hair also wasn’t the best choice for me, but definitely better than black. But I look definitely better with dark eyeliner (not black, i use charcoal grey or dark brown), even though my skin is very light, almost porcelain. Could you help me please?

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      I wish I could, Agata. The truth is that you could write me a book about your colouring and send me every photo of you and I still would not know. I wish I could give you an answer (other than needing a correct analysis to sort it out), my accountant would be thrilled. There are too many possible reasons for all of your very good observations.

  • "; ?> Sarah

    More than one Bobbi Brown gloss is numbered 11, depending on the type of gloss. Is this one Electric Violet?

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      We’d be going back a long time for this one, Sarah. I can look when I’m next in a big store but I confess that if the 2 choices are close, I won’t recall the original colour exactly. If I find anything answer-worthy, I’ll add it.

  • "; ?> Andrea

    Hi Christine, I’m curious if you’ve ever met a LSu with hazel eyes. I think I may be one. Analyzed LSu (albeit online–haven’t had opportunity for in person), and also a LSu equivalent in a custom colors system. Some people in color groups say I look SAu because of my hazel eyes. Just wondering if you’ve ever encountered this and your thoughts? 🙂

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Yes, it does happen, Andrea. Hazel is probably the broadest of eye colour descriptions but I have seen a green/gold eye in LSu. The colours are soft for sure but you could call them hazel.

  • "; ?> Andrea

    Oh thanks, Christine. Hazel can be an ambiguous term, for sure. My hazel leans more toward green-grey-blue with an amber center and gold flecks. From a distance my eyes match my dark blonde hair. I really enjoy my eye color, and love my LSu colors 🙂

  • "; ?> Jesse

    I think I am one of those people who are truly naturally yellow no matter what I wear. I’m also one of those people who doesn’t look good in heavy makeup. For a while I thought that meant I was a spring of some sort… then a friend told me she thought I was too muted to be a spring. This was actually a relief to me because I don’t feel very much like a spring. The yellow coloring has, in the past, steered me away from a lot of purples and cool reds. I’ve always felt uncomfortable in dark colors, I really do feel I can only go so dark, and only so light. I would love to be analyzed but it would be purely a luxury expense since I spend the majority of my day either at home with my daughter or at a job where nice clothes just aren’t practical… and I have a preferred palette that I would have trouble parting with… I really do love muted colors. So while I would love to be analyzed I think that discovering I was anything but a soft autumn or soft summer would be extremely disappointing to me. I just feel at home in those colors. Are there a lot of people who find they aren’t happy with their palette once they’ve been analyzed? Does anyone ever figure it out on their own, only to confirm it through analysis? Do you find people who are naturally yellow in every season or more so in some than others?

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Jesse, I would say that it is a minority of people who are not happy and fewer all the time, now that more images of how beautifully each Season can be expressed are available online. What is in the majority is people who need help understanding how to apply the Season to their most flattering and effective presentation. Though I believe that 12 is the right number of Seasons, and that every person can be found in one of the 12, they are not going to be exactly the same in how they use that Season. Our colour analysts are trained not only in how to determine correct Season, but also in how to customize and adapt it to each individual client.
      Some figure it out on their own, maybe 1 in 30? 1 in 50? Maybe less. It is not common, and even if they figure it out, they don’t always have a correct grasp of why they are that one or how to use it for their own best result.
      Yes, some people are naturally yellower than others. The thing is, unless we are wearing our own yellow, or colours that contain it, we end up looking less-than-best in some way or other.
      To really benefit from the PCA experience, it is most important to go into it without any emotional investments. If anything but a Soft Season would be discouraging, the time is not right for you to benefit fully from the experience. I know many people who love and prefer Soft Seasons but they are truly not showing the world their best face. Most people might recognize that there is something they love but would not do themselves any favours if they wore it as clothing. I hope that you can sit in a colour analyst’s chair one day. It is a remarkable experience to see it done right.

  • "; ?> Melina

    Jesse, in FB seasonal colour groups there are many people who have actually figured it out on their own, and have had it confirmed through analysis. 🙂 In some cases, those people have been told they “can’t” be such-and-such season, and yet have been draped as one 😉 (Like for example lighter-coloured people suspecting they are DW or BW.) So it does seem many people do instinctively know, at least those who have long been into seasonal colour & explored many options.

  • "; ?> Kat

    I wondered if anyone knew what season L’oreal Pink Fever lipstick falls under? Just tried this and it’s a lovely colour. Looks like it could possibly be Lsu. Was draped lsp but having tried various things out, actually seem to be doing better in the cooler pinks of the Lsu cosmetics (Clinique Sweet Pop, for example)

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      I’m not able to help, Kat. Hopefully one of our readers can.

  • "; ?> Melina

    Kat, I’d agree with you that it seems most likely LSu 🙂

  • "; ?> Kat

    Thanks Melina and Christine. Happy my instincts seemed to be right (and apologies for the delay- I didn’t realise there had been replies)

  • "; ?> Kat

    Wondering if someone might be able to assist… I’ve noticed some crossover between a few makeup recs for BW and LSu – especially lipsticks in the brighter pinks. Can these two seasons share/pull off some of each other’s colours? If needed, could LSu pull off BW lipstick with a very light application/blotted down? How does one tell when swatching if looking at a BW or LSu pink (or does it even matter that much if the colours are close)? Thanks 🙂

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      The success probably lies in what each woman desires from cosmetics and her own particular reaction to makeup. On some BW, a LSu lipstick would be weak or greyish (muted), while for others, it may be a pleasure to have found a comfortable colour. I personally prefer a BW gloss if lipstick is too much, but acknowledge too that many women don’t enjoy lipgloss, I among them. If LSu lipstick is the best fit for a BW, and there are certain crossovers, then absolutely. I don’t find it predictable from a swatch and do feel that it makes a difference.

  • "; ?> Kat

    Thanks for the helpful response. Some of my best lipstick finds seem to be in this crossover space between Lsu and Bsp/Bw (Clinique Punch Pop and YSL rouge pur #57, for example) and I’m finding colours recommended for both seem to be reliably a good fit. Some of the Lsu recs are too pale but the Bw/Bsp recs too “shouty”. Not sure what this means in terms of which season I truly into. Hoping I will have the answers for certain in a future draping 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *